Car­bon emis­sions rise in Lochaber

The Oban Times - - News -

IT MIGHT come as a sur­prise to learn that car­bon emis­sions in Lochaber are far greater than the na­tional av­er­age, but that is the case ac­cord­ing to data pre­sented at the lat­est talk given by the Lochaber En­vi­ron­men­tal Group (LEG).

Su­san Carstairs, board mem­ber and for­mer man­ager of LEG, gath­ered masses of data, worked out a lot of cal­cu­la­tions and made some ed­u­cated es­ti­ma­tions to build a com­pre­hen­sive pic­ture of emis­sions in Lochaber.

‘I think it’s fas­ci­nat­ing and it’s im­por­tant to un­der­stand what’s hap­pen­ing at a lo­cal level,’ she said.

This was the third talk hosted by LEG, and board mem­ber Mar­ian Austin said this was the best at­tended of these talks to date.

The data showed that Lochaber emis­sions work out at 17.5 tonnes per per­son per year, which is well above the UK av­er­age of nine tonnes per per­son per year. This fig­ure is in­cor­po­rat­ing in­dus­trial emis­sions as well as per­sonal ones.

Lochaber homes and busi­nesses gen­er­ate 100,000 tonnes of car­bon a year, not in­clud­ing emis­sions com­ing from gas use. Emis­sions from elec­tric­ity us­age are above av­er­age, as is the to­tal from homes and busi­nesses.

Trans­port is a ma­jor source of emis- sions, which is again above av­er­age, with a to­tal of 338,000 tonnes be­ing pro­duced an­nu­ally. This in­cludes trans­porta­tion of foods (151,426 tonnes an­nu­ally), largely from fish farms as well as trans­port­ing prod­uct from the alu­minium smelter and Glen­sanda Quarry.

Some 5,3738 tonnes of car­bon is pro­duced from agri­cul­ture an­nu­ally, 67 per cent of which is due to meth­ane from an­i­mals, again a higher fig­ure than the UK av­er­age.

Forestry, an­other ma­jor land use in the area, and the re­moval of trees for wood causes emis­sions of 483,483t an­nu­ally.

Dam­age to peat­bogs – for ex­am­ple, for build­ing projects on Blar Mor – is an­other source of car­bon emis­sion in the area.

Ms Carstairs said she would like to get a group to­gether, with house­hold­ers as well as busi­nesses, to try to come up with so­lu­tions to re­duce the high emis­sion lev­els in Lochaber.

She said: ‘I would love to see us take this on per­son­ally and in the work that we do. The goal is to find ways to do some­thing about this and make it part of what we do.’

She added that more re­search is needed to look at the im­pact of tourism on emis­sions, through traf­fic.

Pic­ture: Iain Fer­gu­son/ The Write Im­age

Su­san Carstairs, pic­tured here with LEG chair­man Scott McCom­bie, spoke about car­bon emis­sion lev­els in Lochaber.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.